Mosquitoes Thrive in US, but Don't Blame Climate Change: Study | NBC Southern California
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Mosquitoes Thrive in US, but Don't Blame Climate Change: Study

Mosquitoes spread Zika, West Nile, dengue and other illness

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    AP, File
    In this Sept. 29, 2016 photo, Aedes aegypti mosquitoes, responsible for transmitting Zika, sit in a petri dish at the Fiocruz Institute in Recife, Brazil.

    A surprising new study finds that mosquito populations have exploded in parts of the United States, but not because of a warming climate. Instead, the study finds, growing cities and the ban on the insecticide DDT may be responsible, NBC News reported.

    The trend doesn't bode well for the spread of illness — not just Zika virus, but West Nile virus, dengue virus, chikungunya and others, the team at the University of California, Santa Cruz found.

    They tracked mosquito populations in New York, New Jersey and California. 

    "Mosquito populations have increased as much as tenfold, and mosquito communities have become two- to fourfold richer over the last five decades," A. Marm Kilpatrick and colleagues wrote in their report, published in Nature Communications.

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    (Published Friday, March 24, 2017)